By Ovetta Wiggins, The Washington Post
6:28 AM EDT, June 27, 2013
Anne Arundel County School Superintendent Kevin Maxwell will leave his post to become the chief of the Prince George's County Public Schools, according to three sources familiar with the move.
The sources said Maxwell would be announced Friday as the eighth schools chief in Prince George's County in the past 14 years.
On Wednesday, Anne Arundel County Board of Education President Andrew Pruski wrote in an email that board members "are aware of Dr. Maxwell's potential resignation. The Board of Education will be providing additional information in the near future."
Scott L. Peterson, a spokesman for Prince George's County Executive Rushern L. Baker III, declined to comment. He said an announcement is planned for Friday. A spokesman for Maxwell declined to comment Wednesday night.
Maxwell, 61, who has been superintendent in Anne Arundel since 2006, previously worked as an administrator and teacher in Prince George's and Montgomery counties.
Maxwell was named Educator of the Year for 2007 by the Maryland Parent Teacher Association for his commitment to developing relationships with students, parents and the community, county school officials said.
He also launched the county's magnet programs as part of the school system's Programs of Choice initiatives to offer more educational choices for students and their families. Those efforts included the county's first Performing and Visual Arts magnet at Bates Middle School and the infusion of arts integration curricula in five elementary schools.
All 12 high schools in Anne Arundel County have Signature programs, in which a school and its surrounding community chooses a theme that will connect real-life situations and classroom instruction. And last year, Crofton Meadows Elementary School became one of 10 schools in the state to achieve National Blue Ribbon status.
Maxwell's hiring in Prince George's County would be the final piece in the overhaul Baker has initiated for the school system there. The Maryland General Assembly approved legislation earlier this year that hands Baker more governance of the county school system. Under the legislation, Baker has the power to appoint a CEO, formerly known as superintendent of schools, and appoint three new board members as well as name the board chair and vice-chair.
Three sources said Baker's office informed them that Maxwell was Baker's choice Wednesday afternoon.
Baker has described the school system as a liability to the county, holding back potential economic growth as people choose to live elsewhere in the Washington region in part because nearby counties' better schools. Baker sought a takeover of the school system three months ago, but in a compromise bill, state lawmakers gave Baker the power to name the new chief, select three new members to the school board and name the board chair and vice chair.
Maxwell is familiar with the county and the county's schools and has experience in the Washington region.
According to his official biography, he spent 22 years working in Prince George's County as a teacher, principal and chief educational administrator. He also was principal at Walter Johnson High School in Bethesda for four years and was a community superintendent for Montgomery County, overseeing 38 of that county's schools.
Maxwell's own education took place mostly in Prince George's: He's a graduate of Bladensburg High School and earned bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Maryland, College Park. He earned a doctoral degree in language, literacy and culture from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.
Two of Maxwell's four children graduated from Bowie High School.
Maxwell would replace former superintendent William R. Hite Jr., who left last year to become the school superintendent in Philadelphia. Since then, the school system has been headed by Interim Superintendent Alvin Crawley, who recently signed a contract extension that runs through Aug. 30.
On June 1, Baker announced the appointment of Segun Eubanks as the new board chairman. The appointments of Beverly Anderson and Daniel Kaufman followed less than three weeks later. Curtis Valentine also joined the board as the council's appointee.
Baltimore Sun Media Group reporters Pamela Wood, Joe Burris and Sara Toth contributed to this article.
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